Awards & Prizes

Monday, 18 July 2016 16:50

Nick Tsivanidis of the University of Chicago Selected to Receive the Sixteenth Annual Benjamin H. Stevens Graduate Fellowship in Regional Science

Nick Tsivanidis, a Ph.D. candidate in economics at the University of Chicago, was selected as the winner of the Sixteenth Annual Benjamin H. Stevens Graduate Fellowship in Regional Science. The Fellowship will provide a one-year stipend of $30,000 to support Nick Tsivanidisin his research entitled, ‘Commuting Technologies, City Structure and Urban Inequality: Evidence from Bogotá’s TransMilenio.’ This research will estimate the impact of a novel bus rapid transit (BRT) system in Bogotá, Colombia – TransMilenio – in reducing congestion costs along two margins. First, what was the total effect of TransMilenio on city productivity and welfare? Second, to what extent did the system disproportionately benefit the urban poor, by reducing their commuting time and improving their access to jobs? Since the poor rely on public transit while the rich drive cars, TransMilenio may have had both important aggregate and distributional effects for Bogotanos. Tsivanidis’s research is supervised by Professor Chang-Tai Hsieh of the University of Chicago.


The Fellowship is awarded in memory of Dr. Benjamin H. Stevens, an intellectual leader whose selfless devotion to graduate students as teacher, advisor, mentor, and friend continues to have a profound impact on the field of regional science. Fundraising efforts to increase the Fellowship’s endowment are ongoing. Donations should be sent to: The Stevens Fellowship Fund, First Financial Bank, 1205 S. Neil Street, Champaign, IL 61820 USA. Checks should be drawn to The Stevens Fellowship Fund. Donations may also be made by credit card through the NARSC website at


The 2016-17 Stevens Fellowship competition was judged by a Selection Committee composed of: Laurie Schintler, Public Policy, George Mason University, Chair; Nathaniel Baum-Snow, Economics, Brown University;Elena Irwin, Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics, The Ohio State University; Mario Polèse, Urban and Regional Economics, Université du Québec; and Amanda Weinstein, Economics, The University of Akron. The Stevens Fellowship Committee administrates the Stevens Fellowship Fund on behalf of the North American Regional Science Council; its members are: Tony Smith, Chair; David Plane, Secretary; Michael Lahr, Treasurer; Janet Kohlhase; and Neil Reid, Executive Director of NARSC.


The Committee thanks the thirty students who entered the competition in 2016, as well as their dissertation supervisors. Faculty at all North American Ph.D. programs related to the interdisciplinary field of Regional Science are urged to encourage their best students to apply for the Seventeenth Annual Stevens Graduate Regional Science Fellowship. The winning student’s dissertation research in the field of Regional Science will be supported during the 2017-2018 year with a one-year stipend of $30,000. The application deadline is February 15, 2017. Full submission guidelines will be posted at

June 2016

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The Regional Science Association International (RSAI), founded in 1954, is an international community of scholars interested in the regional impacts of national or global processes of economic and social change.

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